Women's Tennis
Two Cats Upset Nation’s Second-Ranked Doubles Team, No. 21 Kentucky Falls at No. 15 Florida

Two Cats Upset Nation’s Second-Ranked Doubles Team, No. 21 Kentucky Falls at No. 15 Florida

by Cami Moore

GAINESVILE, Fla. –Akvile Paražinskaite and Fiona Arrese upset the second-ranked doubles team in the nation on Thursday evening, while the No. 21 University of Kentucky women’s tennis team lost to No. 15 Florida in a 4-1 decision at the Ring Tennis Complex in Gainesville, Florida. The Wildcats move to a 13-5 record on the season, including a 5-5 record in the Southeastern Conference.
The Wildcats got off to a strong start, earning the doubles point and a lead in the dual match after triumphs on the first and third courts. Kentucky has won the doubles point in 16 of their 18 dual matches this season, as the team boasts a 33-9 record in the doubles competition.
Lesedi Jacobs and Anastasia Tkachenko defeated Sydney Berlinand and Sara Dahlstrom in a 6-4 decision on the third court. Then, No. 8 Paražinskaite and Arrese upset No. 2 McCartney Kessler and Marlee Zein in 7-6 (4) decision on the first court. The UK duo improved to 14-1 this season, including 9-1 in the conference and 5-1 against ranked foes, while the triumph marked their highest-ranked win of the season. Moreover, it marked the second straight match the UK duo has earned in a tiebreak.
Kentucky didn’t have the same success in the singles competition, as the team dropped five straight to lose the dual match.
Carla Girbau fell to Layne Sleeth on the fourth court, 6-1, 6-1, then Maialen Morante fell to Sydney Berlin on the sixth court, 6-3, 6-2. Meanwhile, Carlota Molina rallied a 7-6 (5) triumph over No. 36 Merlee Zein in the first set, to become the solo Cat to take the first set during the dual match. The newcomer’s match went unfinished on the second court, 7-6 (5), 3-1.
Florida’s Ida Jariskog defeated No. 71 Jacobs on the third court, 6-3, 6-0. Finishing their matches at the same time, Arrese dropped to Sara Dahlstrom on the fifth court, 7-6, 6-0, then No. 47 Paražinskaite dropped to No. 7 Kessler on the first court, 6-4, 6-3.
The Wildcats move to a 65-30 record in the singles competition.
Kentucky will face South Carolina on Sunday, April 3 at 1 p.m. ET in its next appearance.
No. 21 Kentucky 1, No. 15 Florida 5
April 1, 2021
Ring Tennis Complex
Gainesville, Fla.
Singles competition
1. #7 McCartney Kessler (UF) def. #47 Akvile Parazinskaite (UK) 6-4, 6-3
2. #36 Marlee Zein (UF) vs. Carlota Molina (UK) 6-7, 1-3, unfinished
3. Ida Jarlskog (UF) def. #71 Lesedi Jacobs (UK) 6-3, 6-0
4. Layne Sleeth (UF) def. Carla Girbau (UK) 6-1, 6-1
5. Sara Dahlstrom (UF) def. Fiona Arrese (UK) 7-6, 6-0
6. Sydney Berlin (UF) def. Maialen Morante (UK) 6-3, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. #8 Akvile Parazinskaite/Fiona Arrese (UK) def. #2 McCartney Kessler/Marlee Zein (UF) 7-6
2. Layne Sleeth/Ida Jarlskog (UF) def. #66 Elizabeth Stevens/Carla Girbau (UK) 6-3
3. Anastasia Tkachenko/Lesedi Jacobs (UK) def. Sydney Berlin/Sara Dahlstrom (UF) 6-4

For the latest on the Kentucky women’s tennis program, follow @UKWomensTennis on Twitter and on Instagram, on Facebook and on the web at UKathletics.com

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